my big creative year : ghost gown

ghostly edwardian  gown
She danced right in…..

It’s been almost 2 years since I’ve run into a perfect, ruined whisper of a gown. I haven’t been looking, and none have found me. Interests, fascinations have seasons I guess and I wondered if this particular season had faded away forever. This Edwardian lawn dress, perhaps a wedding dress, arrived last week – it has everything and just like that I am in love again.

edwardian gown detailThere are particular qualities I look for in them – the lace is exquisite and the ideal scale for fancy little wedding birds – some of it is ruined by stains and tears but a great deal is in perfect condition. Looking for just this sort of lace is what sent me in search of a new /old gown a couple weeks ago. And there is so much more, the sheer cotton has worn to a silky sheen – it’s so thin and transparent it looks like it would disintegrate if you blew on it but it has a surprising amount of integrity and it makes the most perfect downy feathers for realistic birds, there is a subtle, lifelike iridescence. I’ve only come across it  once or twice.

And then there’s everything else, the sweetness, the romance, the heartache, the mystery, if she made a sound it would be a far away, off kilter music box playing Chopin. She had come all undone but I stitched and pinned her together for her last photo.

edwardian  gown : ann wood


  1. “if she had made a sound it would be a far away, off kilter music box playing Chopin” Poetry. I have a baby dress like this. I buy/keep/enjoy such things too and it feels good to know there are others out there who are on the same page.

  2. The dress looks so lovely dancing in air with the beautiful molding on your walls behind it! I’m glad you’re able to rescue bits and pass along the beauty that’s left!

  3. I too used to have some beautiful old, old dresses, Victorian and Edwardian and they too were hanging onto this life by a wing and a prayer. I could squeeze myself into the Edwardian wedding gown (a separate top and skirt). It was ivory silk covered with rows and rows of ivory pearls set in ruffled channels of hand made lace. I was a scruffy art student at the time and it made me look and feel like a princess! That bride must have been so delicate and tiny. Needless to say if I had it now I could barely get an arm into it! It is so heartwarming to hear about you treasuring these little scraps and creating something beautiful so that they can have their final swan song before they disappear forever

  4. I can just feel that sensation in my gut–the magic and sorrow and mystery of old things. Such a lovely photographic tribute–thank you for sharing the tenderness of your relationship with this treasure of a gown.

  5. She is so exquisite Ann. If i had one like her(I doubt the cost of one over here would fit my budget!!) she would be kept in honour for a long while for me to admire and coo over. 🙂 x

  6. Kim Pence

    Thank you for transporting me to another time and place with your thoughts, pictures and eloquent words, Ann.

  7. Barbara Del Duco

    Hi, You can find these wedding gowns on Amazon and Ebay. Most of them are in good condition though but you can search for damaged used for material.

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